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Note to Self: On Keeping a Journal and Other Dangerous Pursuitsby Samara O'Shea
Synopses & Reviews
Keeping a journal is easy. Keeping a life-altering, soul-enlightening journal, however, is not. At its best, journaling can be among the most transformative of experiences, but you can only get there by learning how to express yourself fully and openly. Enter Samara O'Shea.
O'Shea charmed readers with her elegant and witty For the Love of Letters. Now, in Note to Self, she's back to guide us through the fun, effective, and revelatory process of journaling. Along the way, selections from O'Shea's own journals demonstrate what a journal should be: a tool to access inner strengths, uncover unknown passions, face uncertain realities, and get to the center of self. To help create an effective journal, O'Shea provides multiple suggestions and exercises, including:
O'Shea's own journal entries reveal alternately moving, edgy, and hilarious stories from throughout her life, as she hits the party scene in New York, poses naked as an aspiring model, stands by as her boyfriend discovers an infidelity by (you guessed it) reading her journal, and more. There are also fascinating journal entries of notorious diarists, such as John Wilkes Booth, Anas Nin, and Sylvia Plath.
A tribute to the healing and reflective power of the written word, Note to Self demonstrates that sometimes being completely honest with yourself is the most dangerous and rewarding pursuit of all.
Teaches journal-writing techniques as a therapeutic tool that may enable writers to access inner strengths and overcome obstacles through a series of writing tips and exercises, and features excerpts by famous diarists.
Table of Contents
In the beginning : Express yourself, don't repress yourself ; The diary versus journal dilemma ; Red light/green light journals ; Anne Frank (1929-1945) on writing the first few entries in your new diary — Romance on record : Express yourself with other people's words ; "I love you, too"? ; Sylvia Plath (1932-1963) on falling in love in the summer rain — Hearts that hurt : Express yourself in an unsent letter ; The blind date that broke the camel's back ; Sylvia Plath (1932-1963) on breaking his heart and your own on a late-summer night — The spirit is willing : Express yourself with questions and concerns ; On the universe ; Joyce Carol Oates (b. 1938) on contemplating your place in the universe — Sense of self : Express yourself in a stream of consciousness ; Sense of another's self ; Tennessee Williams (1911-1983) on pondering your place in this strange thing called life — While you were sleeping : Express your subconscious self ; Picture yourself in a boat on a river ; Lewis Carroll (1832-1898) on using your dreams to define insanity — A day in the life : Express yourself with a specialty journal ; A day in the life of the Philadelphia Museum of Art ; Samuel Pepys (1633-1703) on a day in the life of a seventeenth-century Englishman — All the news that's fit to blog : Express yourself online ; On being blogged about ; Thomas Paine (1737-1809) on being an effective pamphleteer — Crimes of passion : How to make a joke out of your girlfriend's cheating on you ; Express yourself before the crime is committed ; The dangers of forgiving too soon ; John Wilkes Booth (1838-1865) on how to journal after you just killed the President — A dream deferred : Express yourself with goals and lists ; Alternate ambition ; On being naked in front of strangers ; Sins of the mother ; Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888) on giving birth to your first book — Intimate details : Express yourself explicitly ; The violin concerto; or, Lessons in taking a lover ; Anas Nin (1903-1977) on sex both good and bad.
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